Pilates Evolution – The 21st Century Reviews

Pilates Evolution – The 21st Century

Pilates Evolution - The 21st Century

  • Props and unstable surfaces can make Pilates more challenging.
  • Paperback, black and white, 256 pages.

Much has changed in the 21st Century since 1934 when Joseph Pilates wrote his first book (Your Health) about fitness and health. In 1945, he followed up that first expression of fitness theories and principles with his detailed and definitive book of exercises, Return to Life through Contrology. Both of these original books were copyrighted and republished by us, and have now received new updates for the 21st Century. This book is the natural evolution of his original work, elucidating, expandin

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2 thoughts on “Pilates Evolution – The 21st Century Reviews

  1. 4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Helpful combination of old and new Pilates reference material, June 21, 2012
    By 
    Beth Cholette “doctor_beth” (Upstate NY USA) –
    (VINE VOICE)
      
    (#1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)
      
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    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: Pilates Evolution – The 21st Century (Paperback)

    NOTE: I received a free, unsolicited review copy of this book from the author.

    This new Pilates release offers a combination of original source material from the founder of the Pilates method, Joseph H. Pilates, as well as “evolutionary developments,” or updates to Pilates exercises for the 21st century. Joseph Pilates is credited as one of the authors because his two original books, YOUR HEALTH (1934 Edition) and RETURN TO LIFE THROUGH CONTROLOGY (1945 Edition) are reprinted here in their entirety. (Note: These two volumes can also be found in previous release A Pilates’ Primer : The Millennium Edition.) The remainder of this current work is attributable to Judd Robbins and Lin Van Heuit-Robbins, both of whom are Pilates instructors certified by the PhysicalMind Institute in New York City.

    In Joseph Pilates’ first work, YOUR HEALTH, Pilates lays out some of the basic principles of contrology (“contrology” was the name that Pilates himself gave to his system); concepts covered here include posture, body mechanics, and breathing. Pilates’ later publication, RETURN TO LIFE THROUGH CONTROLOGY, provides an overview of his method itself. This book provides detailed descriptions of the 34 original mat exercises in the system, complete with Joseph Pilates himself demonstrating via black and white photos. Those who have never read any of Pilates’ original writings before will note that his passion about his work comes across as a certain smugness and conceit; in both publications, he makes extraordinary claims about the benefits of the Pilates method and seems convinced it is the ONLY way to attain true health and fitness. Personally, I found Pilates’ writing style a bit dry and thus sometimes difficult to slog through, yet it was still fascinating to read about the technique from the founder himself.

    In Part III of this book, “21st Century Pilates Evolution,” authors Robbins and Van Heuit-Robbins begin providing an overview of how the Pilates method developed post-Joseph Pilates. They briefly review some of the most relevant first generation and other master Pilates instructions, along with their contributions to expanding the system. In particular, the authors focus on how Pilates exercises have evolved from the 34 classical matwork moves and exercises performed on the various in-studio Pilates apparatus to the inclusion of a wide variety of props in modern Pilates manifestations. Given this, Robbins and Van Heuit-Robbins present eight equipment-specific chapters, each featuring guidelines for practice, exercise instructions, and resource recommendations. Some of the props highlighted include the Pilates Magic Circle, weights, mini stability ball, elastic resistance, and unstable surfaces such as the foam roller. In the final two chapters, the authors review fusion exercises and how Pilates can enhance sports performance; they conclude the book a Glossary and Index.

    Although the new material offered in this volume is fairly short (just over 70 pages), this book is a worthwhile investment for Pilates enthusiasts, as it provides a convenient reference manual, and I would recommend it.

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  2. 4.0 out of 5 stars
    It definitely has a place on any serious student and practitioner of Pilates’ shelf., August 4, 2012
    By 
    Alain B. Burrese “Author, Speaker, Mediator, … (Missoula, MT) –
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    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)
      
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    This review is from: Pilates Evolution – The 21st Century (Paperback)

    If you look at the fitness section of most bookstores, you will see many books on Pilates. I mean, there are tons of them now. You can also find quite a few instructional DVDs teaching various Pilates programs. Want to know where it all started? Want to know how Pilates have developed since the beginning with a list of resources to further your study? Look no further. “Pilates Evolution: The 21st Century” by Joseph Pilates, Judd Robbins, and Lin Van Heuit-Robbins has the answers.

    Yes, this book is by Joseph Pilates, the founder of the Pilates exercise programs. How, you ask? I mean, Joseph Pilates lived from 1883 to 1967. This book contains authorized, copyrighted, original writings from Joseph Pilates. Both the 1934 edition of Joseph Pilates’ “Your Health” and the 1945 edition of Joseph Pilates’ “Return to Life through Contrology” are included. Reading these provides the foundation and history of this exercise system. They are both interesting reads, and though dated, still provide some basics in which to build an exercise program. When reading them, you must take into account when they were written.

    The book then contains 10 short chapters on the evolution of the various exercise programs based on the original system. The authors briefly explain some of these evolutions, the key players, and provide a few sample exercises from these new routines. These include things such as using the magic circle, weights, doing seated exercises, using mini stability balls or elastic resistance, and so on. While these chapters only show a couple of exercises, they do provide many resources where you can learn complete routines in these areas. The resources, both books and DVDs, that are provided will be very beneficial to anyone wanting to further their studies and practice in any of these areas.

    For the person who just wants to learn a simple Pilates routine, or wants to include some of the exercises into their health and fitness program, this might not be the first book I’d recommend. However, for the person who wants to get to the roots of the Pilates movement and learn what the founder had to say, and then see some of the directions the exercises took once he was gone, this is a great primer. I’d also recommend it for the resource sections. It definitely has a place on any serious student and practitioner of Pilates’ shelf.

    Reviewed by Alain B. Burrese, author of the Ben Baker Sniper Novel “Lost Conscience.”

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